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Beet Harvest Day 8 – The Long Deep Clean

Beet Harvest Day 8 – The Long Deep Clean

Morning Conditions:

🌡️ Temperature: 41 degrees F

☁️ Weather: Cloudy, Overcast

💨 Wind: 5 mph

Safety Meeting Update on the Hurt Trucker

Today, our safety meeting started with an update on the trucker who got his legs run over. He’s in the hospital with 2 broken legs and a broken pelvis. Unfortunately, he may never walk again. Fortunately, he’s getting care and will live.

Luckily, there were no new severe problems involving injuries last night that they reported. 🤞

They did give us a plea to stay aware. Apparently, about a week in, injuries often start to occur due to fatigue and comfort with the job. They warned that this combination of knowing the well enough mixed with tiredness could create problems.

Our Piler is Down with a Mechanical Issue ➡️ Deep Clean Time

We chose to relieve the night shift 5 minutes early since they relieved us 5 minutes late last night.

However, they had just backed out and locked out the piler. This means that they cut the power and made sure it stayed cut to clean it (safety proceedure). But, they hadn’t gotten around to cleaning it yet.

They said they had just shut down to clean it in the middle of the night when another piler went down, so they had to open back up. (Only 1 in 4 pilers can be down for cleaning at a time.)

At some point last night, they started seeing smoke come out of the piler. They cut the power and called in the mechanics. 🙅‍♀️

The mechanic diagnosed the problem as a barring that had broken somewhere inside the middle of the machine.

This meant, we did a deep clean of the piler instead. So, the first hour and a half, we deep cleaned the piler. And that mud was STICKY. 🧽

We had all delayered like crazy hacking away at the mud with shovels.

Normally, cleaning only takes 30-60 minutes, but our foreman said to take our time and not to burn ourselves out. Since the mechanic would certainly work longer than us, we’d still have down time.

A *Hour* Break!

Thus, we get an hour to sit on the clock in our vans and get paid. After such a busy day yesterday, the extra rest is utterly fantastic. It also felt good after the deep clean.

Hence, you’re getting the full picture of this morning for the blog post today!

Busy Afternoon

Woman taking a selfie at the sugar beet harvest
Last Break Selfie

When the piler got back up and running, we noticed for the first hour the truckers seemed to be hurried. A few of them went quite quickly over the end dumps and then jumped the clutch off of them.

With a few radios on the worst ones to the scale house, they calmed down a bit.

After lunch, they even got pleasant! Not one, but 3 of them gave us candy. 🍬 All three of those drivers also drove carefully, so we radioed in compliments to the scale house.

We’ve had a line of trucks ever since.

Part of that line is due to the fact that the indoor piler was slowly creeping out of the building. For several hours, they could only have small trucks and they had to back over the end dumps (which many of them can’t do well). 🤷‍♀️

Evening Conditions:


🌡️ Temperature: 49 Degrees F

☁️ Weather: Cloudy, Overcast

💨 Wind: 10 – 15 mph

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